TYLER MATHISEN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR: Wall Street free fall.
The Dow plunges 1,600 points midday, its biggest intraday decline ever.
The selling was sharp. It was fast, and intense.
SUE HERERA, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR: Tonight, we`ll look at why,
what might happen next, and what you, the investor, need to know to keep
your money safe.
NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT for Monday, February 5th, begins now.
Good evening, everyone, and welcome.
A dramatic day on Wall Street. The Dow marked its worst one-day point
plunge ever, both at the close and intraday. At one point during the
trading session, the blue chip index dropped hundreds of points in minutes,
falling nearly 1,600 points.
Yelling could be heard on the trading floor. Anxiety was high. Volume was
heavy. The gains for the year now gone. The S&P 500 has lost more than $1
trillion in market cap in February, and it`s only the third day of trading
of the month.
Here`s how the major indexes closed today. The Dow Jones Industrial
Average dropped 1,175 points or 4.6 percent, to 24,345. The Nasdaq was off
273. That`s a 3.8 percent dip. And the S&P 500 fell 113 points, or 4.1
Bob Pisani reports tonight from the New York Stock Exchange.
BOB PISANI, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: This was a roller
coaster ride for the record books. At one point, the Dow was already down
800 points going into the 3:00 p.m. hour, then proceeded to drop another
800 points in six minutes, then rallied back 800 points in the next ten
minutes or so before ending down 1,175 point.
We lost almost half a year in an afternoon! What happened?
We talked about the three risks the market is facing. First and foremost,
inflation risk resulting from a stronger economy and a concern the Federal
Reserve may raise rates quicker than expected. Second is valuation risk.
The market is expensive and many say it`s due for a pause. Finally, there
is a political risk rising recently, not just about the battle between
President Trump and the FBI, but also the inability of congressional
leaders to agree on a budget or get behind a plan to increase the debt
ceiling, which is another deadline that is fast approaching.
Today, there were no headlines around any of these issues. Instead, there
were just technical problems. Simply put, the sellers are not yet finished
selling and the buyers are not yet enthusiastic about buying. Really, it`s
Every time the market tried to rally, the volume was weak, indicating
buyers weren`t that interested. But when the market moved lower,
particularly when it kept dropping below the prior lows of the day, the
selling pressure picked up, indicating sellers were again becoming more
And as the market dropped, selling accelerated because many professional
traders have sell stops. Those are levels in the market where they will
sell to protect their profits. That, of course, begets other selling.
One important point — the market function normally, we had very high
volume, north of 9 billion shares changed hands. That`s 50 percent higher
than normal, but there were no reports of any market malfunctions. It was
just a big sell-off.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Bob Pisani at the New York Stock Exchange.
MATHISEN: All right. So, let`s put it all into perspective. What does a
day like today mean? Is it a sign that the bull market is starting to
turn, sentiments shifting?
Veteran market reporter and analyst Mike Santoli joins us now from the New
York Stock Exchange.
Mike, welcome. Good to have you with us, as always.
Who is doing the selling today, Mike, and what triggered it?
MIKE SANTOLI, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: All excellent
questions, Tyler. It`s not clear what specifically triggered the selling
today. Really, it was not about an economic headline, it was not about
corporate earnings, it didn`t seem to be about political news. It honestly
was just follow-through from Friday`s decline.
And I think we have to put into context of this is a bit of payback for one
of the greatest rallies we`ve seen over several months in a long time. The
Dow was up 3,000 points from Thanksgiving until a week and a half ago.
We`ve given back a little over 2,000 points from that.
Today, though, I will say, especially this afternoon, you started to see a
lot of mechanical selling hit the market. It was fairly indiscriminate. It
seemed to be related to a rise in volatility measures that somehow really
threw off a lot of these large funds that had been betting on the markets
So, that`s what we know for right now. Obviously, the major index is down
slightly on a year-to-date basis, but really not much more than that. So,
the long-term market bull uptrend has not yet been threatened, it`s just a
sign of how far above we were above that trend just a couple of weeks ago
that this little setback has not necessarily compromised that long-term
trend just yet.
HERERA: And, you know, valuations in many parts of the market, Mike, are
pretty rich, so maybe this actually turns out to be an opportunity for
those investors with a longer-term time frame who have not been able to buy
those stocks that they like because they`re too expensive.
SANTOLI: Well, without a doubt, sue. In fact, the selling has been so
indiscriminate, it basically they`re kind of throwing out the good with the
bad in the last, let`s say six days, that I do think you`re going to see
some of that activity once the markets settle down a little bit and give
people a chance to assess what companies might have been sort of unjustly
I do think you`re going to see that kind of reaction. Look, nothing has
compromised the idea that corporate earnings are growing relatively nicely.
And even the bond market, which has been a cause of concern lately in terms
of yields going higher, was very calm today. So, it really was not about
macroeconomics or corporate shortfalls. It really was the stock market
almost reacting to its own dynamics today.
MATHISEN: All right. Mike, stick around. Let`s bring in Matt Maley,
managing director and equity strategist at Miller Tabak, and Kathy Jones,
senior vice president and chief fixed income strategist for the Schwab
Center for Financial Research.
Matt, let me start with you. How do you distinguish between what is, as
some are describing this, a constructive sell-off, a welcome pullback? You
know the adjectives. And one that is less constructive and less welcome?
What are the telltales?
MATT MALEY, MILLER TABAK EQUITY STRATEGIST: Well, one of the most
important things we look at is, if you see a deterioration in the
underlying, not just in the economy, but the underlying fundamentals, and
one of the key things is watching credit spreads, especially high-yield
credit spreads. Now, they have widened out a little bit recently, but only
slightly and they`ve gotten very, very tight.
So, this is not the big kind of widening out that would signal that we`re
going to see a big decline like we saw in 2008 or in 2000 in the stock
market. And, you know, I think as Mike alluded to earlier in the day, is
that we don`t really get — you know, markets very rarely crash from the
top. They usually have a sell-off and a retest and internals are poor with
poor advanced declines, lousy volume when you get that retest.
That signals that the market`s going to go a lot lower. So, we haven`t had
any of that. As scary as it is, this is more normal, I mean, 7 percent
corrections after moves we`ve had are very, very normal and actually very
HERERA: Kathy, weigh in on the bond market activity today, because on
Friday we were talking about the fact that interest rates were creeping up
rather rapidly and that that was going to be a problem for the market.
Today people were moving into the bond market and the trading was much more
orderly than what we saw in stocks.
KATHY JONES, CHARLES SCHWAB CHIEF FIXED INCOME STRATEGIST: Yes, today was
more traditional, safe haven buying in treasury bonds. Actually, one of
the distinguishing factors last week was that stocks and bonds were moving
together, which is a little bit unusual when you get very rapid moves like
But today, treasury bonds found a safe haven from the turmoil and
volatility in stock. But I would say a lot of what`s happening in the
markets now is this cumulative impact of the Fed tightening. They not only
have been raising rates for over a year, but they`re starting to reduce the
bond-buying program, the bonds on their balance sheet.
And so, we`re seeing this liquidity start to tighten up. And whenever that
happens, markets have to readjust to that, and I think a lot of this is
driven by the fact that we`re getting shrinking liquidity from the major
central banks of the world.
MATHISEN: You know, Mike Santoli, maybe it`s just as simple as investors
didn`t like the fact that the Eagles won. I don`t know. Who really does
know? But —
MALEY: You know, that`s not what historical patterns would have told us, I
MATHISEN: No, that`s right. It`s usually when the NFC wins, the market
goes up. But nothing has changed in the economy over the past 12 days, has
MALEY: No, hardly at all, really. In fact, today I think you had a little
more good economic data reported, the sort of services index for the broad
economy was higher than expected.
So, I do think it`s been much more about how far the stock market had
climbed in a very short period of time, how stretched valuations have
become and also how stretched investor sentiment had come toward optimism.
A lot of those require a shakeout. And again just today, I don`t mean the
general move from the highs a week or so ago, but just today`s action when
you really accelerated the selling in the middle of the afternoon and then
you yo-yoed around a down 1,600-point Dow and back up and the rest of it,
that really was a lot of trading mechanics based on seemingly some funds
who were forced to do some selling, which may, perhaps, spill over into the
next day or so.
HERERA: So, Matt, if you`re an intermediate-term investor or even maybe a
longer-term investor, you say, take a look at the market and make some
choices now. Tell me more about that.
MALEY: Well, going back to what Mike just talked about in terms of how —
you know, we just saw indiscriminate selling that took place and the market
had gotten very, very overbought. And you know, when you get these kind of
down drafts, people tend to want to panic at the exact wrong time, when the
market`s really hitting its low.
But if you have — your stocks and groups picked in advance, it gives you a
lot more confidence to actually buy. I mean, Warren Buffett has become a
billionaire of taking advantage of when everybody else is panicking.
That`s what you want to do in advance.
Work with your financial adviser. Have those stocks and those groups at
the levels you like them at. Maybe stare it down a little bit. You don`t
have to buy it at all once. You can scale it in.
And that way, instead of selling at the wrong time, you`re going to be able
to take advantage of the big tip and get some great prices.
MATHISEN: Kathy, talk to us interest rates. Today was an interesting day.
The ten-year bond yield moved up initially, moving into the 2.9 percent
area, but by the end of the day, maybe there was some panic buying, because
it ended where, 2.7 percent. What is the range that you think interest
rates are going to be in here over the next few months?
JONES: Well, we`re looking for rates to grind higher as the economic data
continue to be pretty good and the inflation picture continues to show up,
move up towards 2 percent and inflation fell. Our expectation is that the
rates will continue to move higher, both at the long and short end of the
yield curve. Today was that anomaly where because of the panic in the
stock market, people moved into bonds just as a safe haven play.
HERERA: It`s ironic, is it not, Mike, that it also was the first day on
the job for Mr. Powell, the new Fed chief?
HERERA: Do you think perhaps today`s market action, if it continues a
little bit longer, puts on hold any move to raise rates by the Fed?
MALEY: You know, the market did kind of hint at that potentially, in terms
of if you look within the bond market, what its expectations are for how
many rate hikes we might get this year. So, I don`t think today`s action
itself is going to change that story very much, but perhaps the fact that
we do have a new leader of the Fed, we`re not entirely sure of exactly how,
you know, he and the committee will react to incoming information.
You know, there`s an old Wall Street kind of lore that says new Fed chairs
are tend to be tested by the markets at some point. I don`t want to make
too much of that in terms of what happened today, but I do think it`s
interesting that all of these things that, you know, Kathy`s talking about,
how we have to get our heads around just exactly how hot the economy is too
hot or just hot enough with regards to inflation and interest rates, that`s
now the market conversation and that really has a lot to do with what the
Fed`s going decide.
HERERA: Well, we thank you all. We`ll see what tomorrow brings. Matt
Maley with Miller Tabak, Kathy Jones with Charles Schwab, and Mike Santoli,
thank you all.
MATHISEN: And still ahead, what long-term individual investors need to
know about the market sell-off.
HERERA: All 11 sectors of the S&P 500 traded lower today: financials, the
biggest hit, off nearly 5 percent.
MATHISEN: And Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) contributed to that sharp decline in
the financial sector, the stock falling 9 percent after the Federal Reserve
took an unusual step late Friday. It basically put the big bank in
regulatory purgatory. The move, a response to the bank`s fake accounts
scandal sharply limits wells` ability to grow until it takes certain
internal corrective actions.
Wilfred Frost has the details.
WILFRED FROST, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: An unprecedented
reprimand from the Federal Reserve for what is described as, quote,
pervasive and persistent misconduct at Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC). The Fed
will limit Wells Fargo`s growth by capping total assets, something
regulators have never done before.
For now, Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) cannot grow any larger than it was at the
end of last year. That means the bank could have a harder time offering
new loans to customers at a time when interest rates are rising. The
punishment is in response to the fake accounts scandal that first emerged
about a year and a half ago. The bank has admitted that its workers
potentially created more than 3 million unauthorized accounts and forced
customers to buy auto insurance they didn`t need.
Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) must now submit a new risk management plan in the
next 60 days and will face a review on September 30th before the sanctions
can be lifted. The bank is also replacing four board members.
CEO Tim Sloan maintains that the company is, quote, open for business, is
confident that they will pass the 30th of September review, and the impacts
to earnings this year will be minimal. Many have questioned the timing,
given that this arrived on Janet Yellen`s last day in office. But new Fed
Chair Jerome Powell also voted for the action. Powell is the one who will
play a key role on whether to lift the sanctions come this fall.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Wilfred Frost.
HERERA: And Jerome Powell did take the oath of office as the 16th chairman
of the Federal Reserve. He was sworn in and faced some immediate
challenges, like that unsure stock market and rising interest rates.
Powell is a former Fed governor who is expected mostly to continue the
current path of monetary policy.
MATHISEN: Time to take a look at some of today`s upgrades and downgrades,
if you`re brave enough. Wells Fargo`s rating was cut today by at least
five separate investment banks. One of those banks is RBC, now rates that
company an underperform down from outperform. The analyst says the penalty
will result in an ongoing cloud over the stock price and Wells` earnings.
Shares of wells down 9 percent to $58.16.
Dick`s Sporting Goods (NYSE:DKS) saw its rating cut to underweight from
equal weight at Barclays. The firm sites increased competition in the
apparel market. The new price target $25 a share, and the stock fell 5
percent on this down day to $29.87.
HERERA: Lowe`s was upgraded to buy from hold at Jefferies. The analyst
says Lowe`s can triple its earnings per share in five years. The price
target was lifted about 60 percent to $129, the highest on the street.
Shares of Lowe`s, though, in this down day on Wall Street, fell nearly 4
percent to $97.58.
And Charter Communications (NASDAQ:CHTR) was upgraded to outperform by the
research arm of Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC). That firm cites renewed confidence
in Charter`s turnaround despite the competitive environment. The price
target was increased to $460 per share. Nonetheless, the stock was down
nearly 4 percent to $372.57.
MATHISEN: Well, the story of the day, of course, is the stock market
decline and the Dow`s 1,100-point fall. All in, the Dow traveled an
incredible 5,100 points with all those ups and downs during today`s trading
For some perspective, we`re joined by financial journalist Ron Insana.
Ron, always good to see you.
RON INSANA, FINANCIAL JOURNALIST: Thanks for having me.
MATHISEN: You know, you`ve got a historical perspective. You`ve sat at
this desk during these types of days before.
INSANA: With the person next to you.
MATHISEN: And with me too for that matter.
MATHISEN: What do you expect to see tonight and tomorrow as those Asian
markets open and then the trading moves around the globe to Europe and then
INSANA: So, the Nikkei in Japan was down 2.5 percent last night following
Friday`s declines here. I suspect we`ll see additional selling in Asia for
a variety of reasons, not the least of which, it`s not just the Federal
Reserve, whose policies we`re worried about with the respect to the pace of
interest rate increases, but central banks all around the world where we`re
seeing economic growth accelerate in developed countries. So, does Japan
tighten, does Europe tighten, does China have to slow things down because
they`re growing again at nearly 7 percent largely based on infrastructure,
which maybe uneconomical —
MATHISEN: We`ve gone from quantitative easing to a very different monetary
regime and tightening. A little bit here.
INSANA: Certainly here, and what we`re seeing, as Kathy Jones was saying
earlier, the Federal Reserve is reducing the size of its balance sheet.
It`s not the last buyer of bonds any longer, at a time when the U.S.
Treasury, because of the tax reform bill, will be borrowing more money to
fund the deficit $1 trillion this year. That`s a huge increase from last
So, the Fed`s not going to be buying bonds. The treasury`s going to issue
more debt, and the economy`s accelerating and inflation may also be picking
up. That`s not a beautiful environment in which to invest in bonds, so
that means rates could go up. That`s problematic for stocks.
HERERA: What about the political rhetoric in Washington? I heard that
cited by a number of traders today. They`re worried because we`re bumping
up against some key deadlines and they`re worried that, one, the
government, we may have another government shutdown later this week —
INSANA: We may have a debt limit problem sometime later in the year, given
that the Treasury`s borrowing more.
HERERA: Exactly. How much of a factor do you think Washington is, or not
INSANA: Well, no, I would say as a background negative, given that we have
concerns about a trade war with China, a possible pulling out of NAFTA, you
have political and geopolitical concerns. As the market was falling, the
president was speaking publicly, and he called Democrats who are not
applauding or standing during his State of the Union speech treasonous.
So, it`s not the most amicable environment in Washington right now between
parties. And so, as a background negative, I`m sure people are concerned
about that insofar as it may affect policy going forward.
MATHISEN: So, give us a little bit of historical perspective. We`ve just
come through a couple of years where the market was as smooth as a lake in
the middle of the summer.
INSANA: Yes. Like glass.
MATHISEN: Like glass. It really has been.
These kinds of violent moves or corrections are not uncommon.
INSANA: They`re not uncommon in historical perspective. But again, as you
said, this is the longest period we`ve gone without a 3 percent correction,
the longest period in history we`ve gone without a 5 percent correction.
We had a 10 percent pullback Friday to today, peak to trough.
There are also some strategies that are being used by big institutions that
have dampened volatility. Big insurers and others are buying the dip and
shorting volatility, making the bet that volatility would stay low. The
volatility index last week was at nine. It closed at 37 today. It
So, whoever had that trade on got mauled. And as Mike Santoli was
suggesting earlier, there had to be some forced selling in there for large
players who were out of position and really had to unwind some of those
complex strategies that they had on the boards.
MATHISEN: And these were the machines taking over, more —
INSANA: And strategies, too, that were being used by insurance companies
that weren`t necessarily computer-driven. If you go back to the crash of
`87 when we talked about portfolio insurance, which was anything but, this
was a similar kind of strategy that when unwound can be fairly violent.
MATHISEN: Ron, great to see you.
INSANA: As always, thank you.
HERERA: Thanks, Ron.
And coming up, what one financial adviser is telling his clients after
today`s sell-off. But first, a look at all 500 stocks in the S&P 500, and
there were just a couple of them that were higher today.
HERERA: Broadcom (NASDAQ:BRCM) makes its final offer for Qualcomm
(NASDAQ:QCOM). That`s where we begin tonight`s “Market Focus.”
The chipmaker said it would pay more than $120 billion to buy its rival in
what would be the biggest tech deal ever. Broadcom`s initial offer was
rejected by Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM), which said it significantly undervalued
the company. Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) says it will review this revised
proposal. Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) shares fell more than 6 percent to $61.73
and shares of Broadcom (NASDAQ:BRCM) were off 2 percent to $28.10.
Lululemon said its chief executive has resigned from the athletic apparel
retailer effective immediately. The company said he did not live up to
Lululemon`s standard of conduct regarding integrity and respect for fellow
employees. The board is looking for a replacement. Lululemon`s shares
were down in today`s otherwise down trading day by 1.5 percent to $77.41.
MATHISEN: Oil and gas producer Hess (NYSE:HES) posted a wider-than-
expected loss and revenue that missed expectations as higher costs
pressured results. It was the third straight quarter Hess (NYSE:HES) was
in the red. The company says it has launched a restructuring and cost-
cutting program, which it anticipates will save about $150 million a year.
Hess (NYSE:HES) shares off nearly 7 percent to $44.49.
And Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA) (NYSE:CCS) may consider outbidding Disney
(NYSE:DIS) for 21st Century Fox`s media assets. CNBC reports Comcast
(NASDAQ:CMCSA) (NYSE:CCS) was willing to outspend Disney (NYSE:DIS) last
year for those Fox assets, but Fox had regulatory concerns. CNBC also
added that Disney (NYSE:DIS) has begun preparing its response, if Comcast
(NASDAQ:CMCSA) (NYSE:CCS) were to present a competing offer. Comcast
(NASDAQ:CMCSA) (NYSE:CCS) is the parent company of CNBC, which produces
this program. Shares of Fox, Disney (NYSE:DIS), and Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA)
(NYSE:CCS) all lower in today`s session.
And Bristol-Myers Squibb (NYSE:BMY) said its immunotherapy treatment when
used with another one of its drugs helped patients live longer than
conventional chemotherapy without the cancer getting worse. Bristol-Myers
also reported stronger-than-expected earnings which were helped by stronger
drug sales. Shares down nearly 4 percent to $60.96.
HERERA: As an investor, this market sell-off may be a little unnerving, so
let`s talk about what steps you could take to protect your portfolio,
whether you`re a medium or a long-term investor.
Joining us to offer his insights is Douglas Boneparth. He`s the financial
adviser and president of Bona Fide Wealth.
Welcome, Doug. Nice to have you here.
DOUGLAS BONEPARTH, BONA FIDE WEALTH PRESIDENT: Great to be here.
HERERA: Let`s start with what you make of today`s trading session.
BONEPARTH: Yes, there`s no question, it`s an ugly day, but this is
something we have to use to remind ourselves that making knee-jerk
reactions is probably not the way to go.
MATHISEN: So, Doug, what should investors be doing with their money here?
What do they need to be thinking about? I guess it really comes down to
their risk tolerance. If a day like this is too intense for you, you need
to be somewhere else.
BONEPARTH: That`s right. If you find that you`re struggling with the
emotional toll of a day like today, I guess your silver lining is that you
need to get yourself a plan and have something in place that can help hedge
against the emotions making a bad decision. So, let this be your gut check
to go ahead and, you know, put that plan together, and obviously, a
financial adviser, a financial professional is someone qualified to do
HERERA: All right. So let`s talk about what you are telling your clients
today. What did you tell them?
BONEPARTH: As I began, you know, first thing I`m telling them is not to
panic. What is kind of out of — well, rather, what is unusual is what
we`ve experienced in 2017, and what`s typical is to see something like a
pullback, like a correction. So, I really think we have it backwards if
you`re looking at today as the thing that`s unusual.
So, the first thing I tell them, of course, is not to panic, keep things in
MATHISEN: So it really is a point, Doug where you want to consider
rebalancing is one of the things you`ll look at, if you have too much in
stocks. That is really the smart move right now, right, Doug?
BONEPARTH: I would agree. You know, you`re probably still at record
highs, despite what you saw on Friday and today. So, if you still have
risk built into your portfolio, now would be a good time to consider
MATHISEN: So, that pretty much says it all there. You need to consider
your risk tolerance, your portfolio weightings, and take a look at that and
see what`s going on there.
Doug, we appreciate your time tonight. Doug is with Bona Fide Wealth.
BONEPARTH: Thank you.
MATHISEN: And before we go, would you really like to take one more look at
HERERA: Oh, yes.
MATHISEN: Oh, you`re going to whether you`d like or not. The Dow was down
1,155 points. That is the greatest single-day point drop in the Dow`s
history. That`s about 4.6 percent. The Nasdaq composite down 273 points
or 3.8 percent. The S&P 500 down 113.
Today`s action, Sue, puts the S&P and the Dow industrials in the red for
HERERA: It sure does. And we are only three days into this new trading
week and month. So, you`ll want to stay tuned to NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT
tomorrow and every night.
That does it for us, though. I`m Sue Herrera. Thanks for joining us.
MATHISEN: Thanks from me as well. I`m Tyler Mathisen. Have a great
evening, everybody. We`ll see you tomorrow.
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